Effects of mental and computer-aided trainings of reach and grasp skills on motor control plasticity in bilateral upper limb congenital transverse deficiency humans (NZ7/00588)
Project Leader: Katarzyna Kisiel-Sajewicz, Ph.D.
Department of Kinesiology, Faculty of Physiotherapy


This project explore a potentially powerful mental and computer-aided trainings that may be administered before upper extremity transplantation to induce plasticity of sensorimotor cortex in humans with congenital absence of upper limbs. The neurophysiological outcome is evaluated and compared periodically (before training and at 4, 8, 12 weeks of the training period). To examine structural and functional mechanisms of plasticity in neural and muscular system, related to the training, we evaluate following measurements outcomes: (1) structural changes in CNS: Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI); (2) functional changes in CNS: functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), electroencephalography (EEG), and also indirectly electromyography (EMG) and mechanomyography (MMG); (3) functional changes in peripheral nervous system: near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS); (4) functional changes in muscles of upper extremity stump: electromyography (EMG), mechanomyography (MMG), near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS).

 Selected publications:
Kisiel-Sajewicz K,  Jaskólska A, Marusiak J,Szumowski Ł, Marchewka A,  Jednoróg K, Jiang Z, Yue G.H., Jaskólski A. Brain Activity during Mental Imagery of  Reaching-to-Grasp in Congenitally Amputated Patient. 20th Annual Meeting of the Organization for Human Brain Mapping, 1519;  June 8-12, Hamburg, Germany, 2014.

Brain activation related to motor imagery of the reaching task using amputated limb overlaid on the inflated surface in standard MNI space; p<0.001 (uncorrected). PMC, premotor cortex; SSM secondary somatosensory; OCC, occipital cortex.